Honestly, anything can help because let’s face it, NBC’s coverage of the summer and winter Olympics in the past years has, in a word: sucked. Hardcore. Here’s a few things I think NBC can do to improve their daily coverage, and make everyone happy.
- Extend coverage to all-day, show everything: Instead of airing a few things at 3-5am on your other channels like NBCSN (which no one gets), start showing coverage of events at 6 or 7am, and run it all day, right through to midnight on NBC, not the other channels. Yes, 18 hours of coverage per day. I know they won’t all be live, but that’s fine, keep the time delay, but it’d only be time delayed for some of it. This way, people could actually watch events like hockey, curling, biathlon, and during the summer events like badminton, table tennis, shotput/javelin, and equestrian. People want to see these events. And do it with minimal commercial interruption.
Because if NBC’s primetime coverage is to be believed, the winter Olympics consist of Skiing, Ice skating, and maybe a Luge. That’s it. And the summer Olympics are basically just swimming and running. Mostly swimming. If you compare NBC’s coverage to our neighbor to the north, Canada, you’d be disgusted. NBC is showing a little over 500 hours of the games, while Canada’s CBC is showing over 1,500 hours. Thanks NBC – I know people here just couldn’t live without their daily dose of Days of Our Lives and Dr. Phil.
- To go along with #1, don’t relegate viewers to your website (NBCOlympics.com) to watch those other events – especially when you have to sign in with your cable service logon to watch it. So….people who don’t subscribe to cable or get TV over the air are just screwed? Thanks. By extending to all-day coverage you could show tons of events. People want to see the US hockey team. They want to see the equestrian jumping events.
Oh, and they want to watch them on their TV – not sitting at a desk in front of a computer screen.
- Discontinue all interviews with the athletes: Because oh my god. Seriously, I am so sick of correspondents talking to the athletes after their events, or the lengthy interviews about yesterday’s runs. They ask horrible, stupid questions all the time. For example, when Shaun White crashed out his chances for a medal in the half-pipe, someone asks him “Shaun, you just fell and ruined your chance for a medal – how do you feel?” How do you think he feels? Idiot. Then there are the ones like “Dave, you need to do really well on this run to be in contention – what’s going through your mind right now? What are you going to do?” Well I’m sure he’s probably thinking about having a bowl of cereal and isn’t concentrating on the biggest event of his life. Seriously, these people are the worst. Just pull everyone off interviews and send them home. They are useless.
- Less biopics/human interest stories: I’m sure that makes me sound like a horrible person, but really, I don’t care. I want to see the events. I don’t care that Dave’s mom had to hold a fund raiser to come watch him. I don’t care that Erica didn’t medal four years ago, but really wants to this year. No kidding. Stop taking 15 minute chunks of coverage to show background stories and just show me the events. If I am curious about the athlete’s background, put it up on the website and I’ll check them out.
- Show the entire opening/closing ceremonies, uninterrupted: This is where you got into trouble last time. The viewing public doesn’t care about advertisements. Stop cutting away from the on-going spectacles and just show the whole thing. ‘But Dan, we need to show commercials to make money! Waaah waahhh’ you say? Tough. You can throw up a few uninterrupted hours of coverage, you just don’t want to. There isn’t a mechanism that physically interrupts streams of media to insert commercials, you do it because you want to make money of one of the prestigious events in the world.
The Olympics are world-wide event of epic proportions. Time to put aside the money-hungry commercialism and let the public experience the biggest events the entire world is watching.